March 31st, 2010
09:46 PM ET

Bullies & Victims: Join the Live Chat

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/02/liveblogfinal.copy.jpg]

Tonight on 360°, we're looking for answers in the suicide of a Massachusetts high school student. Prosecutors say bullies drove Phoebe Prince to take her own life. Some are saying the school completely missed the trouble. You'll hear from the principal. We're keeping them honest. Plus, Pres. Obama's new plan for offshore drilling. Is he flip-flopping from comments he made on the campaign trail and we continue our week-long series 'Scientology: A History of Violence".

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)

Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (353 Responses)
  1. Emily

    @Sheila Toomey,

    "My mother did NOTHING when I came home crying. I, myself, went to the police."

    I think that it's great that you were so proactive on your own! 🙂
    ...that you went to the Police. I hope that the Police helped you, when you went there.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  2. Clifton

    I was severely picked on in High School. It is NOT a fun experience. I told a teacher and that made it worse and the teacher had the AUDACITY to tell me to man up. Really?

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  3. A. Smith, Oregon

    I suspect the undercover FBI agent put them up to many of these outrageous claims, plots and pipe-dreams. This group seems like they routinely drank Sterno and is largely lacking in any sense of actual tactical planning.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  4. Sasha

    We all have to do something about this an create awareness whether you have children in school or not, we must be confidants to our family members, nieces, nephews, cousins .. ect ... together we can make school safer for the children that are our future! Well done AC!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  5. Lorraine Horton

    Hey Anderson
    I admire how you are getting to the real issues that are going on in America and "Keeping them Honest" thanks for the coverage.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  6. devon

    this is ridicules bullies can hardly even can be called bullies theses days the most that happens that goes under criminal means is calling kids names, maybe a fight here and there thats it.
    now no disrespect for the parents but this kid obviously had other issues that should have bean dealt with, and how can you try to deal with these bullies?

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  7. ralph eckhardt

    Bully harassment is abusive behavior done for a position of power in order to control because the bully lacks confidence and the intelligence to maintain a position as a student or adult and uses methods of threats, humiliation, abuse, intimidation, etc to control. When we enforce ethics that recognize fairness, justice and equality we weaken bully harassment. Adults ignore and refuse to help and should be held responsible. They are accountable for establishing a hostile environment.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  8. Danny

    I heard you headed back to Haiti next. Thank you for honest reporting on Haiti. Bullying is not something anyone should be proud and kids should help responsible. And if the teachers know about they should be fire.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  9. margaret wilson

    Bullies need to be confronted by their own peers.I did this and don't ever regret it.My twin sister calls me her hero to this day(25 years later).I wasn't getting bullied by her others were.I only had to deal with one fight with her and even though she got me beat somewhat nobody ever thought of bullying me because I would stand up to them.I would do it today if I had to and have no regrets.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  10. amanda hill

    bullying is one of the worst things a child or teen can go through.When i was in the 7th grade i went through it and i know first hand.it was honestly a horrorible year for me.im now 16 and i still get bullied everyday.i dont know why,im just a hated person,i try my best to be friends with everyone,and not talk about anyone but yet i still get bullied.i feel for this family because i know its not easy and he shouldnt have went through that,no one should ever have to feel like they have to take their own life. i will keep you all in my prayers

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  11. anne gewurtz

    You seem to be concentrating on the adminstraters, teachers and parents. What about the students, the children? Education, I think , is the key, fostering values in them through discussion and presentations which instil the message that this behaviour isn't acceptable.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  12. Nancy in Oregon

    Oh Dorothy, that's what I was hoping to hear about in the schools. This is not JUST a school problem, clearly, but school is where so many hours a day are spent so schools simply must incorporate awareness into education.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  13. Brad

    This is a serious problem in this country that needs to be addressed. I was bullied as a from 7th grade and wishing that I could just kill myself and just like the Carmichael's son, I would come home everyday from being bullied from school and my mom would ask how my day was and I would say,"it was good." When in realiity I was being traumatized at school. Children need to know that it is ok to let their parents know if they are being bullied. But for children it is hard, because when bullied you feel very ashamed and embarrassed that it is happening to you.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  14. Rachel

    Can we blame bad parenting please? Since when did we forget to teach our children The Golden Rule.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  15. Barb

    There needs to be laws in all states dealing with bullying. My daughter was being bullied at school and the school said they are busy and let a lot of what they hear in the halls just roll off their backs. The new superintendent was not happy with the asst. principal and the bully did get suspended from school for a day. Bullying is still going on in the school.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  16. Cynthia

    My heart goes out the parents of John. He was a handsome young man with a gentle face. My daughter was bullied in middle school and never told us. We had the good fortune to be able to move her to a private school in 8th grade, after we had seen her grades plummet. Once at the new school, she told us she had no idea school could be so fun. She then told us what had happened at the previous school, and when asked why she never told us, she said, she thought that was just the way it was.

    I suspect it is why they chose suicide too, because they begin to believe this is the way their lives will always be and no one can help them. We need to do better for our children.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  17. Isabel Siaba

    @ Anderson

    It was touching to watch the way so caring and sensitive that you interviewed the family.
    It is so important to have caring and attention at these times.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  18. Jo Ann, North Royalton, Ohio

    Society needs to start shaming and condemning these bullies instead of looking the other way.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  19. Syeve

    Keep the heat on the bullying reporting. First Class Anderson

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  20. Tam

    My son is bullied nearly every day in school. Talks to the teachers, principal and the Super of schools get us no where. We even reported one assault to the police and were told that our son looses his rights when he leaves the house to go to school. Parents need some place to get affordable help!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  21. Anne

    God bless you, Anderson. You handled so sensitively the interview just now with the parents of the boy who hung himself on Sunday. And my condolences to you about your brother. Tammy ( the mother) said it so well, that the other students have to speak up and report any bullying they see to the school teachers and administrators. The target person of the bullying will be too scared to do this, because of the fear of ramped up retaliation. Bullying is evil, plain and simple. Thank you for covering this very important subject

    March 31, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  22. Veronica

    As a classroom teacher, I resent the blanket statements about schools failing to do their jobs to protect their students. We work hard to create a safe, nurturing environment in which our students can grow and develop. Bullying often occurs in unstructured situations, and we have to count on the students to step in and tell a staff member when something is wrong. Bullies are very discreet and manipulative, and often we cannot pursue anything unless it is witnessed firsthand. I was a child that was picked on so I am very passionate about this topic!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  23. A. Smith, Oregon

    My heart goes out to the Carmichaels. I hope Anderson Cooper does a followup on this grieving couple in 6 months or 1 year to see how they are doing and if their present grieving has moved to healing this terrible tragedy in both of their lives.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  24. Gloria, Brooklyn, NY

    Anderson, my heart goes out to you and your family and friends for the loss of your only brother.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  25. Leslie G. Schentag

    All I have to say is that the Children have learned thier lessons well.
    Take a look around at our society. The "Gangsta Rap", the inherent violence that permeates everything we do.
    And you wonder why the youth are so violent..They learned it from thier Parents, Government, TV, Music & the list goes on...
    Yes they have learned thier lessons well

    March 31, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  26. Vadrin

    My 8-year old was bullied for about 4 months at a new school in a new county in which he was enrolled. I went to the school administrators and bus driver a total of 6 times in regards to the situation. They did little things like shift him around the classroom but it kept happening. I wrote a general letter about bullying to the superintendent to inform them of this growing bully problem. After awhile, my son ended up being cast as the bully for defending himself. I hated to do it, but I had to take him out that school before the school year ended. He has no bullying problems at the new school. Im convinced it's an administration thing. Bless all the parents who have lost children to suicide because of bullies.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  27. Jack

    These parents don't even know what the child was being called. Which tells me that they did not do all they could for their child. If the school doesn't give any help, you go to the parents of the bullies.
    Unacceptable fire everyone and start over. Teachers had to observe these behaviors being forced on this young boy.
    Such a shame

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  28. starr, formerly known as vincent

    My thoughts and prayers are with those parents.

    I can't imagine how i would handle if it were my child.

    all parties involved with bullying need to realize that it is NOT a "right of passage" that all kids go through.

    These parents are showing how dangerous and heartbreaking bullying really is.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  29. Emily

    Good evening Anderson, Devna, 360 Team, Mike, Jo Ann, Gabriela, David & Isabel, Casey, Adelaide, Gloria, & Bloggers.

    All of these young teens (& younger) commiting suicide is so heartbreaking! 🙁

    Listening to those parents was heart-wrenching.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  30. Kevin, Las Vegas, NV

    Anderson, I can't imagine how challenging and difficult it must have been to conduct an interview with the parents of a young boy who had just commited suicide. My heart goes out to those parents. My hats off to you, though, on a phenomenal job.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  31. Alicia Stephenson

    Bullying seems to get worst every year. Children my age are losing their lives every day because of this problem. It needs to STOP! We need to get some kind of law to stop bullying its not right. I am so sick of it.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  32. Jo Ann, North Royalton, Ohio

    Bullies are inadequate people who only feel powerful when they are in a group. By themselves they are nothing.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  33. Matthew Nashville,Tenessee

    There has to be more done to show how damaging bullying can be a person. Though it's hard to to regulate morality serious steps need to be taken to reduce abuse of "weaker students" which is what we're talking about., abuse.As a survivor of such abuse I can relate.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  34. Betty

    My daughter was brave and came to me when 3 kids bullied her on school bus. She tried to get help from bus driver and he just yelled at her and told her to sit down and shut up. I was soo angry! I went down to the school the next day and talk with principal. I seen my daughter at lunch time and asked her " do you see any of those girls that was soo mean?" She did not know what i was gonna do and really neither did i but when she pointed them out to me i went over to the table where they sat,no one was looking, and i told that kid that they had better keep their hands off my daughter or else!!! The next day my daughter said Mom we are friends now and it never happened again. I know that some will not agree with me but i had a good outcome. I dont see alot of that. I do not regret it at all!!!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  35. Karoline, Los Angeles

    Can't thank these parents enough for being willing to tell their story.

    What's it going to take? I guess more lawsuits. It seems the schools don't wake up until they have to pay some poor family millions of dollars.

    Too bad some administrators can't feel until their wallets are pierced.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  36. Frank

    Most authorities support the bullies. This applies to every age group. That's why it continues. The suicides are a judgement on the rest of us.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  37. Gloria, Brooklyn, NY

    " To the famiy, may I express the grief that I feel for your loss!"

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  38. Fahim Lodhi

    This is just disheartening that people could do something like this!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  39. Dawn Richardson

    Everyone keeps talking about the schools. What about parents? Check the laws... Educators can do something but it starts at home... How about talking about laws that hold parents more accountable for their children's behavior? How many of the parents confronted the offending student's parents? How many of those parents of the victims actually pressed criminal charges? What about the size of the schools, and numbers of students? There is a lot going on here. More than just a day or two coverage worth. This problem has many facets. If you are going to talk about it, try covering some more them.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  40. Cessy - Chicago

    I'm hoping that this administration or someone from this administration will step up and do something about this Bullying issue.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  41. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    Good job!!!! You are right thing to do!!!!!!:) That is very important to do call police. 🙂

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  42. Yvette Robinson

    There are 3 Bottom Lines . . .

    1. Everyone involved with the bullying of this young lady should be held accountable, The students should all be sent to a Juvenile Detention Center for a lengthy period of time. The courts must make an example out of them. There have been far to many deaths from bullying.

    2. The parents should be held accountable and pay stiff fines!

    3. The administrators/teachers that were aware, should all be fired!

    Bottom Line.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  43. Sheila Toomey, Woburn, Massachusetts

    Seems all these victims are very handsome and beautiful children!

    Why is it always the straight A students!?

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  44. A. Smith, Oregon

    Anderson Cooper, how old were you when you lost your brother? Was he a younger or older brother?

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  45. Bella C.

    I am a student at a high school and I believe that everything you are talking about is important but not worth it, because principals and counslers might not beleive you.Or they might even favor the popular students and say there's nothing wrong. I'm not saying I've been in the bullied position but when the adults do this I find it irresponsible and rude. If I were a child in that situation I would try and toughen it out, because iIwouldn't see a point in telling an adult at my school. I just want to know if anyone has an answer to why nothing is being done to those adults?

    Bella C.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
  46. Nicole from the Netherlands

    Hello everyone, I have been bullied for years, thought about suicide when I was eleven. Yesterday Dr Phil said that it thouches your soul, who you are..
    And how lonely kids are and ashamed
    He was so right.
    This is hard to watch. Anderson and 360 team and Dr Phil, thanks for adressing this isue!!!

    March 31, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  47. Tim Traudt

    I attended a Catholic School from the 2nd grade to the 8th grade. I was bullied and harassed everyday for many reasons. I told the administrators, priests, even the local Bishop, and nothing was done about it. I had thoughts of hurting my bullies in many ways. Today I am attending college and through the Grace of God was able to forgive the people who bullied me. Throughout my life time I wanted to hurt my bullies. My father told me there are people out there that could do more damage to him than me. I never understood this until about 4 months ago one of my bullies was arrested and found guilty of possession of Child Pornography and has now ruined his life because he is now a registered sex offender

    March 31, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  48. Pamela

    The schools need to be legally accountable.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  49. Kevin

    I was never bullied in high school but being a three year letterman in football I felt I should use my physical and social powers to stop those who bullied and I did. Bullies are the scum of the earth that should be disciplined with absolutely no tolerance. Juvenile or not if someone is accused and proven guilty of bullying a student who has taken their own life they should be given the death penalty. This world would be a better place without them.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  50. Nancy in Oregon

    Oh Anderson, well done.Well done with that aching family.

    March 31, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
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